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U.S Treasury Department: Estimates of Newly Hired Employees Eligible for the HIRE Act Tax Exemption

The HIRE Act gives employers Social Security payroll tax incentives to hire workers unemployed for at least eight weeks.

In March, the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act of 2010 (HIRE) was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama. HIRE gives employers financial incentives to hire workers who have been unemployed for at least 60 days by exempting those workers' wages from the employer's 6.2 percent contribution of Social Security payroll taxes in 2010. Employers may also claim a tax credit of up to $1,000 for each new worker who is retained for one year.

In a report completed before 2011 employer tax returns, the Treasury Department analyzed available data on the results of HIRE.

From February to May, 4.5 million workers who were unemployed for at least eight weeks were hired by employers eligible for HIRE. Newly hired workers with employers eligible for HIRE make up more than 12 percent of all workers who were unemployed for at least eight weeks since the law became effective.

Since the average worker unemployed for at least eight weeks has been unemployed for approximately 10 months, HIRE targets those job seekers having exceptional difficulty finding work.

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